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03.09.12
Lincoln Consolidated School District Surprised with the TAP Award of Distinction
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NIET Chairman and TAP Founder Lowell Milken (far left) and NIET President and CEO Gary Stark (far right) present the TAP Award of Distinction to the Lincoln Consolidated School District in Arkansas. Lincoln Consolidated School District Superintendent Frank Holman accepts the award on the district's behalf.

Los Angeles, CA—Leaders of the Lincoln Consolidated School District in Arkansas were surprised with the TAP Award of Distinction, which honors an organization for its dedication and commitment to TAP: The System for Teacher and Student Advancement. The Award was presented before more than a thousand educators and policy leaders attending a Friday luncheon at the 12th National TAP Conference, Building a System of Teacher Leaders. Superintendent Dr. Frank Holman accepted the award on the district's behalf.

TAP: The System for Teacher and Student Advancement is a revolutionary education reform that offers teachers opportunities for career advancement, ongoing job-embedded professional growth, educator evaluation and performance-based compensation. The implementation of TAP's comprehensive elements is proven to strengthen teacher effectiveness and student achievement. The Lincoln Consolidated School District adopted TAP in the 2003-04 school year, and all three schools now implement the system.

"From the leaders of the district to the classrooms at every campus, TAP is the at the core of advancing teacher quality and student achievement," said Dr. Gary Stark, president and CEO of the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching, the non-profit public charity that manages and supports the TAP system and presents the TAP Award of Distinction. "Dr. Holman and the district have demonstrated resourcefulness in funding to sustain TAP's growth and in the capacity to develop a chain of leadership from within. We are proud of our partnership with Lincoln schools and their ongoing efforts to make TAP their core strategy to advance teaching and learning."

"Before TAP, we had some serious student achievement problems," said Assistant Superintendent Clay Hendrix, who previously held TAP career and mentor teacher positions."Thankfully, we've overcome those. I don't know how we could have made such large gains without TAP in our schools."

In the Lincoln Consolidated School District, each school has selected master and mentor teachers who, along with the principal and other administrators, form the TAP Leadership Team. This team drives instruction through weekly collaborative professional development and follow-up, classroom observations and pre- and post-conferences with every teacher.

"TAP is how we do business and it affects everything that we do," said Jana Claybrook, TAP master teacher at Lincoln Middle School. "We're planning instruction and dissecting student data to improve our achievement. Simply, TAP is our life."

Other districts receiving the TAP Award of Distinction are the DeSoto Parish School System in Louisiana, Lancaster Independent School District in Texas and Laurens County School District 56 in South Carolina.

Photos of the TAP Awards of Distinction are available for download in the TAP website newsroom. The TAP Award of Distinction profile video for DeSoto Parish School System is available on the TAP website videos page at and on the TAP system's YouTube channel.

The TAP Recognition Awards are funded by the Lowell Milken Family Foundation.

Introduced in 1999, TAP impacts more than 20,000 teachers and 200,000 students. For more information on TAP or the 12th National TAP Conference at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles, visit www.tapsystem.org. You can also follow the TAP system's live updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/tapsystem.

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“In every endeavor, people make the difference, and just one person has the power to make a profound difference in the lives of so many people.” - Lowell Milken